Sydney, Dec 17: Experienced fast bowler Brett Lee and batsman Brad Hodge have been included in Australia's 30-man squad for next year's World Cup in the subcontinent.
Lee has retired from Test cricket, but has been in great one-day form for his domestic team New South Wales, while Hodge has also starred in the limited overs format for the Victorian Bushrangers. The pair will be pushing their claims for selection when the final 15-man squad is named on January 19.
"We've selected an initial squad for the World Cup with an array of world class one-day players, some of whom tasted success in the 2007 ICC Cricket World Cup tournament," the Courier-Mail quoted chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch, as saying.
"Our form in one-day cricket over the last 15-months has been good and we are hopeful this group of players will be able to push for Australia's fourth successive ICC Cricket World Cup Trophy," he added.
The selectors have also recalled all-rounder James Hopes and fast bowler Ryan Harris.
"There is blend of youth and experience in this extended group with exciting young talent like David Warner, Mitchell Starc, James Pattinson and Stephen O'Keefe all pushing for inclusion in the final fifteen. These players have some opportunity between now and January 19 to push for a spot in the final squad of fifteen," Hilditch said.
Australia squad: Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke, Doug Bollinger, Dan Christian, Xavier Doherty, Callum Ferguson, Brad Haddin, Ryan Harris, John Hastings, Nathan Hauritz, Brad Hodge, James Hopes, David Hussey, Mike Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Shaun Marsh, Andrew McDonald, Clint McKay, Stephen O''Keefe, Tim Paine, James Pattinson, Peter Siddle, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Shaun Tait, Adam Voges, David Warner, Shane Watson and Cameron White.